From A-Cold-Wall’s immersive commentary on constricting architecture, to Lou Dalton’s farmyard-inspired frolics, Alex Mullins’ ravers take on tailoring, to Italian label Iceberg’s London debut, we present the Wallpaper* pick of London Fashion Week Men’s S/S 2019
A-COLD-WALL*: the anticipation around LVMH finalist and Virgil Abloh protégée Samuel Ross’ latest show was palpable. As guests entered in A-COLD-WALL’s show space, they were handed protective goggles, ear plugs and a dust mask; an immersive experience awaited. Ross aimed to explore man’s uneasy relationship with the stark and enclosing aesthetic of Brutalist architecture, creating a theatrical performance which involved rubble covered models carrying wooden structures, and a nude man covered in red liquid breaking forth from a polystyrene box, and writhing in detritus. Theatrics aside, the collection emphasised the British designer’s prowess in streetwear, with innovative nylons finished with wire cord, zips and padding taking centre stage. The brand’s curving leather clutches will soon be as coveted as those protective eye masks and ear buds
Berthold: after skipping a catwalk show last season, designer Raimund Berthold presented a performance-focused and outdoorsy S/S 2019 offering, inspired by desert scenes at dusk. Working in a colour palette of sand, bubblegum pink and black, Berthold presented parkas and cagoules in papery leather and lightweight plastic, layered with sleeveless hoodies and pocket detail trousers. It was protective and military-focused, with looks accessorised with caps, balaclavas and camping knapsacks.
Alex Mullins: designer Alex Mullins first showed at London Fashion Week Men’s for S/S 2017, and since his debut the designer hasn’t shied away from innovative prints and finishes. For S/S 2019, he presented a collection divided into 9 triptychs (a smart move should one theme not catch a buyer’s or customer’s eye). This resulted in tailoring layered with 90s rave cut-out neon vests, double-breasted suiting constructed from squiggly splices of fabric, paint-splatter prints and Oriental fish motif jacquards. Accessories were also standout, seen in bum bags resembling soft circular drums or shoppers constructed from chainmail
Iceberg: since his appointment as creative director of the Italian heritage label in August 2016, London-based designer James Long has imbued the brand’s signature cartoon prints and logocentric intarsia knits with a vibrancy and eclecticism signature of the city. Long leapt one step further for S/S 2019, holding his latest men’s and women’s show on the London Fashion Week Men’s schedule. The resulting collection – a blend of poppy retro prints, sporty silhouettes that nodded to the upcoming World Cup, and logo-detail tailoring, featured Peanuts and Joe Cool intarsia knits, souped-up printed denim and football strips. All topped off with Iceberg logo accessories it highlighter hues, clear Perspex boots, and a lightweight cagoule draped around the elbows.
Christopher Ræburn: sustainability has been a thread running throughout London Fashion Week Men’s, a focus seen predominantly in Oliver Spencer and and Matthew Miller’s collections. Christopher Raeburn has always held environmentalist aesthetics at the forefront, and is renowned for his repurposing of surplus army materials. For S/S 2019 the designer presented a collection packed with outdoorsy streetwear essentials, like transparent raincoats, padded cagoules and tracksuits. His collection also marked a collaboration with Timberland, and featured upcyled patchwork tracksuits and Timberland logo bum bags strapped across the body.
Qasimi: founder and creative director of the London-based label Khalid Qasimi explores the concept of the travelling nomad in his collections. For S/S 2019, the designer looked to the shores of Northern Africa for inspiration, with a relaxed and rugged collection of sportswear and tailoring, including reflective utility gilets, cagoules and denim and leather. ‘Every season we talk about this idea of the modern day traveller. I’ve always veered to pulling influences from my history said the UAE-born designer backstage. ‘The check prints are based on archeological markers and the washed ikat print was inspired by leftover mattresses you often find on street corners in North Africa. I found something quite romantic about that idea